Latin Dance festivals have been around for more than 20 years now. In that time, they’ve grown from one festival every few months for the whole world, to 4-7 festivals every weekend in different cities around the world, at the same time. Our dance communities have exploded into an international network with dancers demanding more - it's a "buyer's market" with so many options out there. Festivals must meet or exceed those expectations in order thrive, or even just survive. Some events deliver on expectations, the great ones over-deliver, but unfortunately many have not yet delivered on some basic requirements. It takes time and experience to get it right, and every year is a learning experience. Let’s help our event organizers knock it out of the park to make our experiences awesome, and their event as successful as possible.
Make your guests happy and get some FREE promotion! While we know we can't make every dancer happy every time, here’s our "Top 10 ways to satisfy a dance festival crowd" to get you started 😀.
And let's not forget to take care of your locals. Often, out of town guests get treated better than the local community. Locals are valuable ambassadors, and without them, there would be no local community. Where possible, work with them, involve them, appreciate them. They’ll be more inclined to promote the event to friends. Locals are excited to experience some "fresh blood" at their local congress so give them reasons to help promote it. Guests who travel to your city also want to experience it – the food, the weather, the sights, and the dancers who make up the community. An event well-attended by the locals speaks volumes!
Kudos to promoters who put in the effort (blood, sweat and tears...literally) to organize festivals with the intention of giving their communities the opportunity to learn, be inspired and entertained by the best in the business, to meet new people and enjoy sharing that with other danceaholics. Great events are not made over night. Nail the basics and you're off to a great start!
How does your local dance festival rate? Did we miss anything? Please comment below!
QUESTION FOR THE READERS: Which festivals around the world over-deliver on these basics?
Caryl Cuizon, iFreeStyle.ca Co-founder
(repost from 2014)
We live in the era of instant gratification.
We want to see results ASAP, right now… yesterday even.
We like challenge, but don't let your ego get in the way of your own growth. When it comes to dancing, it’s a bad idea to skip or rush through learning the fundamentals.
If you want to know why, READ ON. While the reasons can apply to dances in general, we’ll focus on the Latin street dances – salsa, bachata, cha cha.
5 REASONS WHY INVESTING TIME IN LEARNING THE BASICS IS A GOOD IDEA
The basic steps, timing, and technique in dance provide a foundation for EVERYTHING that you’re going to learn going forward. With great fundamentals, you’ll acquire knowledge and skills that can serve as “short cuts” to learning new things. You’ll ALREADY understand and can execute the most elementary skills like timing, lead and following technique, weight transfer so you can focus on what’s NEW.
Stay focused on the goal..."To be a better dancer". Be patient. LEARN YOUR BASICS. Practice your basics. Enjoy the rewards in the long term :) You and your partner will thank you for it!
Caryl Cuizon, iFreeStyle.ca co-founder.
Various authors including Caryl Cuizon, co-founder of iFreeStyle.ca Latin Dance Company.